I have asked several tailors in Hong Kong if they make ties, only to receive looks ranging from bewildered to indignant. Who does custom-made ties in Hong Kong? How much does it cost and how long does it take?
Mr Dandy: Maybe the skill has died out, just like the tie. Seriously, I can't believe anyone wears those nooses any more. Like you need a custom-made one anyway when everyone from Hermès to Gap has them at every price, width, colour and pattern? If you do need to dress up, switch to a Mao collar! (I'm only half kidding.)
Mr Dapper: Take one look at the way a tie falls and how the fabric glides or bunches around the knot, and you will realise that there is no comparison between handmade and machine-made ties. A few tailors in Hong Kong do maintain the practice, such as Raj Mirpuri (8/F, Star House, 3 Salisbury Road, Tsim Sha Tsui, tel: 2317 0804; www.mirpuri.com ). With their expert assistance, choose from more than 1,000 fabrics, then pick your preferred width and number of folds (either five or seven). This will determine the exact price, ranging from an affordable HK$500 to HK$1,500, and you can expect delivery within a week or so. The young chaps at Moustache (31 Aberdeen Street, Central, tel: 2541 1955; www.moustachehongkong.com ) can tailor a six-fold tie within one week and offer a selection of 100 fabrics in cotton (HK$1,200) or silk (HK$1,400). Dandy's predictions of the tie's demise are wrong, obviously.
Is it me, or has every guy been upgrading his earphones? Where can I get some designer headphones of my own?
Mr Dapper: Gild the lily all you like, but sound quality is the true test. Danish brand Bang & Olufsen has been a technology leader since it was founded by engineers in 1925. Its discreet, in-ear earphones in lightweight aluminium and rubber offer superior fit and sound from speakers mounted on telescopic bars. They are available in black or white, with yellow, orange or green for showy types (HK$1,700; IFC Mall, Central, tel: 2526 8800). Or try the Form 2 by Steve McGugan in a similar range of colours (HK$1,650). Bose is also excellent, and its QuietComfort 15 Acoustic Noise Cancelling Headphones are rather ingenious (HK$2,580; Apple Store, IFC Mall, tel: 3972 1500).
Mr Dandy: That's great. Except with those small buds, I always wrench the wires out or lose them. There are awesome designer collaborations around. The great Skullcandy + D&G from 2011 may have sold out, but Skullcandy has other stylemakers (HK$690 and up; HMV, Entertainment Building, 30 Queen's Road Central, tel: 2739 0268; www.skullcandy.com ). Diesel and Monster have nailed it with slick, futuristic designs (HK$2,700; Lane Crawford Home Store, Pacific Place, Admiralty, tel: 2118 3398; www.monstercable.com ). And Philippe Starck has designed the cool, wireless Parrot Zik by Starck (HK$3,399; Lane Crawford Home Store; www.parrot.com ). Other hot brands: Beats by Dr Dre, Audio Technica, Sennheiser and Denon.
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